Monday, November 30, 2009

Rest Day

Today is a much needed day of rest. I'm not tired so much from training, but rather beat up a bit. My calf is just about 100%, but since my foot is still hurting, I'm going to try and stay on me feet as little as possible today.

Also, I'm gonna try and figure out what exactly the problem with my foot is. It feels like I have a bruise on the outside "boney" part of my midfoot, but I can't remember ever striking it on anything or doing anything that would make it bruised. I'm beginning to think it's some soft tissue stuff, or even a tendon related thing. There's some slight burning, but again, I'm not sure what it could be. I think rest will help it, as well as icing it and keeping it elevated. Whatever the cause of the inflammation, it needs to go away so I can get back to normal training.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Bike 4 Hours

Rode for 4 hours today. All base effort, within the MAF perameters. I did exceed my max HR of 155 a couple times, but it only lasted for a moment. I know that's probably not entirely acceptable if you're following the MAF protocol to the letter, but I couldn't hold it back on some of the climbs. I find it much easier to keep the HR down on the run than on the bike. I don't know if that's because you can simply walk, or that you can slow the pace way down when you need to, even on climbs.

I learned another very important lesson today. As the old saying goes, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." For the entire season, I trained on and raced the same bike in the same postition. I'm not a total aero "weenie", and I don't go with a super aggresive position. To me it's more important to be able to run well off the bike and finish strong than it is to crush the bike and have a shit run, but that's just me. Running is my strength and I want to race the run, not just limp home. So anyway, I switched bikes for today's ride. I finished building up a spare tri bike that I got, made the position super aggressive, and decided to take it out on the ride today.

I didn't think it would be a big deal, but after 3 hours, I was beaten the "F" up! Bad!!! My back was aching, my right knee hurt, and my neck felt like I just spent the whole day looking up at the sky. I was miserable. So I stopped home, picked up my "real" bike, and went out for the last hour. Honestly, it was like putting on a glove. That bike just fits me. I'm still aero, more powerful, and very, very comfy.

So, just as I learned not to switch things up with running shoes, I've now learned not to mess with my bikes either. If something is working for me, I'm just gonna stick with it. There's no reason to go with the flashiest this or that just because so-and-so is rocking it on race day. From here on out there will be NO CHANGES!!!

The foot is still hurting like a mother f'er, but the calf is just about 100%. Funny how when you hurt one part of the body the other "mysterisously" get hurt compensating for the injured side:). Tomorrow is a well needed rest day. I'll look to take care of the foot and see what I can do. Hopefully if all goes well I'll be able to hit all of my key runs for next week. I'm excited to run pain free again!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

1:30 "Long" Run

Ran an hour and thirty minutes today. I'm considering this to be a long run since my calf has caused me problems this week. Oddly, the calf felt fine as I warmed up, but it's now the opposite foot that's causing the most trouble. It's bruised on the outside from limping around this week. It "numbed out" on the fun and I didn't feel it, but I'm sure it'll hurt more later. I'm gonna try to keep my compression socks on, and ice it when I can. I'm sure there's no soft tissue damage, it's just a bit bruised from landing on a place it's not used to.

The run felt great today and I probably could've gone much longer, but I don't wanna push it. I'll wait until the body is completely at 100% to do that. HR averaged 148. I don't know how many miles it was and I don't want to. Time and HR are the only things on my mind. If I had to guess though, I'd say it was between 11 and 12 miles...just a guess though:).

Friday, November 27, 2009

Run 50 mins, Swim

Started the day with a nice easy MAF run this morning. Today was really a test to see how the calf would fair. I intended to run on trails, but was running a bit late to work and had to settle for the roads. I also intended to cap myself at 45 mins. So much for discipline today.

It all worked out though. The roads really weren't a problem at all, and the trails may have actually hurt it more. The injury, I feel, has to do more with a stretch or pull than an impact injury. I've been thinking a lot about it and I really feel that the Newton's major downfall is that they put something in your way (the forefoot lugs) that isn't suppossed to be there. Therefore, your foot, when landing, is twisted and/or stretched in a way it's not intended to be. This might not happen on every footfall, but when the foot lands flat, the calf and muscles of the lower leg are stretched out more than they would be even if you weren't wearing shoes at all. This is just my theory, but it's the only thing I can think of. I've run 10 miles before in nothing but Vibram Five Fingers and wasn't even sore the next day. I've also trained in racing flats for periods at a time with no ill effects. I'm efficient and have good form, so this is the only conclusion I can reasonably come to. Anyway...

The calf was solid up until about 50 mins. I felt it there, but there wasn't really much pain. My opposite foot was really the only thing that gave me a problem. I guess limping around for a couple days gave me a little bit of fatigue that I didn't notice until I ran. It's more of a bruise really on the outer edge of my foot, but I'm sure it'll go away by tomorrow.

In the afternoon I went for a swim. Nothing long, but got in some more freestyle and felt really good about it. Again I didn't do any sets over 100 yards, and kept good form the entire time. Drills were the main focus again and I knocked out some solid sets. Drills are super boring but I'm really seeing the difference they make in my form when swimming. I've never felt so smooth in the water.

Tomorrow is a longish run. I was suppossed to go for an hour and forty minutes, but I'm gonna modify it as I go. The goal is to reach an hour pain free, but if I'm feeling good at that point I'll continue. Obviously, as well, if it hurts at all before the hour mark, I'm gonna pull the plug early.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Ate...All Day

No training today. I did ride my mountain bike 5k while a client of mine ran a local Turkey Trot, so I guess that counts for something.

I basically wanted to rest the hell out of my calf in preparation for a light run tomorrow to test it. I would have swam today, but the pool wasn't open early enough, and I needed to get to the race to help out with my client. It's not a bad thing, though, because today was a solid day for resting the calf. I think I may only have been on my feet for a total of 1-1 1/2 hours today, and this was definately NOTHING strenuous.

I have so many things to be thankful for today they're too long to list. There's health, well being, family, etc. But I think today I'm actually thankful for this little calf ordeal I'm going through. It's teaching me more about myself and how to deal with something like this should it ever come up again. The mental part of an injury, at least to me, is so much worse than the physical. I'm constantly thinkning about how this is going to effect my training and preparation for this upcoming season's races. In all reality, it will have NO impact on anything this season! That is, of course, if I don't do something stupid like push through it. November, and the winter in general, is a time to take care of your body. I enjoy this phase of the season because it's laying the groundwork for what I want to accomplish in the summer. Being strong and disciplined mentally is worth its weight in gold once the season starts. At least for me.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Swim today. Only about 30 minutes focusing mainly on drills, but with a few freestyle laps thrown in.

Today was really the first day that I allowed myself to do meaningful freestyle laps in the pool after a little more than a month. I felt like a prisoner let out of jail. It was like I had been thrown out of solitary confinement and placed back in the general population with the rest of the sharks. I felt pretty smooth and fast.

I didn't do more than 110yds at a time, but the time difference was pretty dramatic. I lost about 15 seconds in a less-than-all-out 100 yard attempt. 15 seconds!!! I was pretty pumped but I know that there's still plenty of work left to be done. I'm still like a baby deer learning to walk, so I need more practice with everything. I'm going to continue to work on drills more and more, again limiting myself to swim sets of no more than 100 yds at a time. I think this will keep me from implanting those bad habits permanently, particularly when I begin to fatigue.

The calf is still an issue today. I played with the idea of riding my bike today instead of running, but in the end decided it would be better to lay off the lower body stuff entirely before I wreck myself completely. The only action my lower body saw today was in the pool, and that doesnt' bother the calf at all. Besides, I could use more work in the water.

I'll try to run again Friday, but if it's anything less than 100%, I'm gonna pull the plug. I'll still ride semi-long this Sunday, but I really want to give it a chance to really heal before then. Worse case scenario, I don't wind up running until next week. Even if this is the case, I'll still be able to ride and will have plenty more time to work on my swim. I'll have to take this positive approach as running is my first and absolute love. I really feel like I've had the wind taken out of my sails by missing only 2 runs! Kinda depressing.


Woke up this morning and the hurt calf was pretty stiff. I decided not to sleep with one of my compression sleeves on the leg which was probably a bad idea. I had wanted to go for a bike today, but in the interest of getting rid of this little "niggle", I'll probably forget about it and swim instead. It's so hard for me to be disciplined enough not to excercise. Like I said, I've never been unable to train before, so this is uncharted territory. I just have to remember that 2 days with no training is better than 2 months of no training.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Run 15:00, Bike 2 + hours

Today was the run that wasn't. I'm starting up a big base run focus this week and I was super excited to begin. Probably too excited.

I hurt my calf wearing a stupid pair of "shoes" on Sunday's run. Since then I've been foam rolling the calf and wearing compression sleeves to speed recovery. This morning it felt O.K., but not 100%. In hindsight now, I probably should have let it recover one more day before running on it, but bad judgement took hold of me and I went out anyway. Dumb idea!

I made it about 2 miles into the run before I couldn't go anymore. I stopped, hobbled back home (pissed off beyond belief) and hopped on the bike for a couple hours.

I've never NOT been able to train and it was scary how depressed I got over this. I don't think I've ever missed a day of training, so this is unusual territory for me. I don't think I handled this "hurt" calf properly, and learned my first lesson in what it means to be smart and disciplined when it comes to my health.

As directed by coach, I'm gonna take 48 hrs completely off from running. I hate the thought of this, but I'll still be able to ride a bit, and that helps. I noticed after getting off the bike today that I wasn't limping. It felt better but I still don't want to push it much.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Rest Day

No exercise today. My calf is still jacked up a bit from yesterday's mishap with "those" shoes. I've been thinking about it some more and there also might be a link between the yoga I did Saturday night and injury. I hate to even call it an injury. It's more like just a strained muscle. Injuries are serious. I'm just hurt.

Yoga and stretching are two things I never do. Every time I start a Yoga or stretching program I get hurt. So what the hell was I thinking when I did it Saturday night??? Well I've changed my position on the bike to a more aggressive one. I think my position last season, although comfortable, sucked aerodynamically. I flattened out my back a bit, and it has caused a little discomfort in my right hip. I've had to play with my seat height a little, and I think that'll help. There's just an adaption period that I'll have to go through.

With that said, I'll work a little on my hip flexibility, but nothing serious. I think my body will adapt to the bike over a bit of time and with some more long rides thrown in. Stretching, for me, is not a good thing. I'm not stiff as a board, and given my history of getting hurt when I do it, it'll be something I forgo in the future.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Run, Swim

Ok, I've cooled off a bit since my early post today. It's not that I hate the Newtons, they just don't work for me. Ultimately I should be mad with myself for not realizing this and having the discipline to NOT wear them. Anyway, water under the bridge...

The fun today was great. I got the HR up a bit more than I wanted, but averaged 148bpm for the day. Only an hour but still nice to get out in the morning. I ran into my buddy Stefan, who just torched Kona this year. He's on a temporary hiatus from racing Ironman this year as he and his wife just had their first child. We ran together for about 40 minutes and it was great to catch up for a bit. He's wicked fast, so any chance I get to actually run with him is nice.

After the run I headed over to the pool for some more drill work. Again, as this is a rest week, I didn't want to go too long on time, but work more on quality in the water. I managed to stay on task for about 30 minutes, which was just about right. I'm happy with some of the results I'm making, but I think I'm still going to inquire about swimming lessons from some of the coaches at another of the local pools. We have a real strong local swim club team here, not to mention a great Division I college program right down the street. I'm gonna try to see what professional guidance I can get. I'm willing to jump through whatever holes I have to to be a good swimmer!!!

Tomorrow is a rest day (a.k.a. mountainbiking for a bit). I really can't wait to do more long days!

Damn Newtons!!!!!!!

Ok, this is gonna be a short, but emotionally charged post, and I'll probably remove it later but I have to vent right now. I'm never, ever, ever wearing Newton running shoes ever ever again! I freakin hate these things! I've worn them in the past, loved them for a few weeks, and then wound up with a calf injury. So, my dumbass decided to take a pair (I have 3, like an idiot) out of the back of the closet and wear them for the last three weeks of base running I've done.

Like always, I had some lower leg soreness at the beginning-and this was to be expected. Soon after though, it would get worse, I'd rest a little, and then repeat. Finally, today, in an easy base run of an hour, my right calf got overloaded, tightened up on me, and ended my run. Luckily it was about a half mile from my house, and I had already hit the one hour mark, but WTF????

The real question is why the hell did I ever switch from rotating my Nike Lunar Glides and Nike Elites for these stupid things that have only hurt me in the past??? I guess I needed something to add some spice to my runs, but "F" that! I'm so done with these stupid shoes. I know they're not for everyone, but screw this. I've NEVER had a running injury, EVER! And I switch to these clown shoes and BAM! there goes the calf! GRRRRRR!!!!!!!

Back to my Nike's!!! They've NEVER let me down!

OK, rant over. Sorry if I offended anyone.

Saturday, November 21, 2009


Biked for 2 hours today. All base, all under 155bpm's. I'm really making an effort to stick to MAF come hell or highwater, so until further notice, all intensities will be at 155bpm's or lower, and at a steady pace, as outlined in Gordo's blog.

I stayed in the big ring for most of the ride today. I really want to work on pushing a larger gear this year as I feel I can be more efficient this way. I raced this way in my final race of the season. It didn't have the greates effect on my bike split, but I was able to run off the bike much faster. I think my bike will get faster as I ride more this way, as will my run. My legs feel much better after the ride pedaling with a lower cadence.

Tomorrow is a base run, again under 155, followed by a swim.

These are a couple pics from the ride today.

Friday, November 20, 2009


Nothing special today, just a bit more drill work. I only swam for about a half hour though. I didn't want to do too much as this is a rest week in my training plan. Still gaining more and more confidence as this "drill experiment" continues.

Tomorrow is a 2 hour bike and Sunday is an hour run along with another swim session. I'm can't wait to get out on the bike again since the weather here is simply gorgeous! I'll post some pics from tomorrow's ride! Gonna be nice!

This pic is from the last tri I did this season, the Mighty Montauk Half Iron distance race. We, (Team Continuum) won the team division.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

No swim, Jog

Didn't do much exercise today. I haven't really been feeling all that good today, so I decided to take a "mostly rest" day.

I woke up with a headache which is usually a sign I didn't sleep all that well the night before. Either that or a sign that I'm getting sick. My motivation was pretty low today, not to mention work was pretty busy. It was probably best not to push it too much and instead take a day to relax and try to eat well.

I did manage a quick jog with Lucky in the afternoon. It was really for her more than me and gets her out. On day's when I work a lot, she really doesn't get out of her crate very much and it's really not all that fair to keep her pent up like that. If I can get her out for a half hour or so, she feels much better and I feel like a more responsible pet owner! :)

Tomorrow I'll do the swim I was suppossed to do today, along with some cord work. This weekend should also be pretty nice as the weather is warm and I'm looking to get out on the bike for a bit on Saturday and again perhaps on Sunday.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Run and Swim

Had a fantastic day of training today. Short, but very very sweet.

The morning was a 45 minute run. With the run I'm now ULTRA committed to MAF. MAF, MAF, MAF!!!!! I commented on Lucho's blog yesterday and he explained:

"Dave- Yes, my speed at a low HR is from training specifically for that. Very high intensity training erodes the body's fat burning economy so it needs to be used only after you have built a very true base. Starting speed work before this only limits how fast you can get and how high you can build your fitness. MAF if you don't know any other numbers."

So there it is. I always knew about MAF before, but never fully appreciated the impact that high intensity work has, especially in regard to how fast I can get. Being that I have in no way neared my potential, I'm taking this very seriously and will from here on take MAF just as serious. Therefore, today's run was locked in at a very rigid 155 bpm HR cap. To make things even better, I actually averaged only 143 bpm. For me this was slow, slow, slow. I averaged 8:39 miles, but was super happy not only with my discipline in doing so, but happy in the fact that I know it's that discipline that will take me to the next level.

For the afternoon it was back in the water for a swim session. I'm continuing with the "drills only" protocall, and it's really coming together now. It's taking some time, but I'm actually feeling (as I've said before) some great improvement with my feel of the water. Most importantly I feel that I've learned what hydrodynamic means. I'm going through the water with much less "friction" and have gotten better at all of the drills I do. It's funny and doesn't make much sense, but I never realized the impact that drills can have on what you do. I say funny as with my athletic background, all we ever did at practice every day was drill, drill, drill. In lacrosse I played one of the most technical positions (goalie) and drills were our bread and butter-Why would swimming be any different?

Tomorrow is back in the water and possibly out on the bike for a short spin. I may, though, substitute the bike for an afternoon hike with Lucky. It'll be a game time decision.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Run and Bike

Today was a swim day but I just didn't feel like getting in the pool on another beautiful day. I figure we don't have too many more of these left, so I better take advantage of it while I can. Also, training, especially at this point of the year, should be fun. I didn't feel like doing it today, so I did something else. I'm not skipping the swim, I'm just doing something different today. I'll do the workout I was suppossed to do today tomorrow. No biggie.

On a different subject, I'm giving some serious thought to relocating. I have no ties here on Long Island, other than my parents, and the business I run can be run just about anywhere. The only problem is building a clientele, but that's something I'll worry about the more serious I get about this decision.

Basically, I'm just fed up with the people here. I've transformed quite a bit of my life in the last 6 months, and my primary desire in life is to be happy day in and day out. I don't want to waste my life being unhappy-it's just too short! I don't mean to get all deep, but I just need to be around people who appreciate the things I do. Long Island is all about image, money, and things that really don't matter all that much in the big picture-at least not to me anyway.

So I've been thinking about a few different locations. I plan on making a few trips this winter to look at what's availible. This may or may not happen, but at this point I'm pretty set on relocating at some time within the next year.

Ok, rant over, time to go back to work. I may do some swim cord work tonight, but nothing is set for sure. If I feel like it I will, if not, then I'll just leave it to my swim tomorrow.

Monday, November 16, 2009

90 or so minute spin (rest day)

Took a nice little spin out on my tri bike today. The wather was just so nice I couldn't refuse the urge to get out. I was suppossed to rest today, but I really think at this point of the year it's not all that necessarry. I'm no where near any sort of burnout-physical or mental-so I don't really see much harm in it. I did a good job holding on to some of the base fitness I gained from last year, so I'm going to move ahead without worry. If I do begin to feel any sort of fatigue (both physical or mental) I'll change my attitude pretty quickly!

These are some pics I took out on my ride today. Note the sweet orange bar tape and brand new Time Tri shoes-a super deal!!! Other than that these were just some cool shots I took.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Run, Swim

Had an 1:20 base run with Grant today. Nice and easy with some good convo throughout. I got the chance to show him some of my local running routes and I think he approved. This summer hopefully we'll get some of the CREW out for some runs, rides, and swims. It really makes me appreciate the great areas for training that I have around my house.

We're headed off to the pool for a quick swim before Grant heads back into Manhattan. This will be a good test for me as far as discipline goes-I'll get to see whether or not I can maintain NOT swimming freestyle and sticking to drills. We'll see how it goes.

Afternoon Swim:
Had a pretty decent "technique swim" this afternoon. It was tough to do a lot of the kicking drills as my legs were a little tired from this morning's run, but I managed. I think I'm really "feeling" the water for the first time. I'm beginning to feel how much of a difference it makes to become more streamlined and move north to south rather than east to west. In doing these drills, I've found that a lot of my problem was that I was consistently moving my hips too much laterally. I think I wasted a lot of time "wiggling" in the water rather than moving forward. I'm faster already just by making the effort to go forward and not sideways.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Mountain Bike 2:45

My buddy Grant is here for the weekend. We went out for a 3 hour mtb in the pouring rain and made it about 2 hours and 45 mins through the way. We got caught in some torrential downpours, buddy trails, and soupy puddles, but it was a blast the whole time. I didn't wear my Garmin, but I can safely say the ride fell within the "base" peramiters. Not very hard, but fairly consistent effort. I always enjoy getting out on the trails once we're out there.

Tomorrow is gonna be an hour base run followed by more swimming. I'm actually disappointed I didn't get a chance to get in the water today, but at least it'll happen tomorrow. Looking forward to the run as well, even though it'll be slow as tar.

Friday, November 13, 2009


This morning I checked out the Endurance Corner website before I headed off to the pool. That has got to be one of the best Triathlon websites out there, hands down. The amount of free info provided by those guys is priceless. I honetsly don't think there is a need to buy books or info about triathlon when there is such a great website to look at. It gave me some great ideas on how to structure my "technique workouts" in the pool. I think this coupled with the fact that I'm now focusing only on a few drills per session have allowed me to make some more strides. Also, my motivation to be in the water is much more than it was in the last couple weeks.

The rest of today will be devoted to resting a bit and a little more swim cord work in the evening. I picked up a band yesterday with 25lbs of resistance and it's tourture! This should be another good training weekend also coming up, so I'm looking forward to that-even though the weather is suppossed to be lousy. If it's still raining by tomorrow I'll take The Meat Saw out on the trails and get her all muddied up again!

Thursday, November 12, 2009


Very productive swim today. Focused on doing 3 drills for 40 mins. In the past couple weeks I've done a bunch of different drills, never really focusing on any one thing. As I got in the pool today I figured it would be better to master one thing at a time. Today was all about working one side of the body at a time. First isolating my kick with fins, and then working on adding in the arms-again, one side at a time.

By the end of the swim I felt I had made some serious headway. I was beginning to get more and more streamlined, and felt overall more balanced in my stroke. I think I'm going to head back again for another session later this afternoon if I have the time. Doing it this way really gives each workout a specific goal, which, in the long run, I think will serve me better overall. Also, I'm going to do some band work to get those swimming muscles in shape!

Did another swim, this time only for about 25 minutes. I just wanted to get back in the water and practice more.

When I was 12, I went to the Official Little League Baseball summer camp in Williamsport, PA. There I recieved one of the best piece of athletic advice I've ever heard-even better than any of my Division I college coaches. Simply put, in an assembly during the second week of camp, the camp director told us pre-teen campers, "Practice doesn't make perfect. Only perfect practice makes perfect." Now I know that probably every other coach in the world has uttered these words at one point or another, but this has stuck with me from the time I was 12. I haven't always practiced perfectly, but I do remember these words.

With this new endevor of becoming a super swimmer, it's more important than ever for me to remember these words. As I mentioned earlier in this post from the morning, I practiced only 3 drills and focused in on them like my life depended on it. I must get these drills perfect, otherwise they're pretty much useless. Each one has to have attention to detail paid it, otherwise, there's really no sense in me continuing to stare at the black (or in the case of my pool, blue) line until I'm sick. Bad drills equal bad form, and that's what I want to stay clear of. Until I perfect them, the 3 drills I performed today will be all I do. In a funny way, it motivates me even more. I guess that's part of my OCD coming out.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Ran for an hour today. Decided to get it done early as I'm heading into Manhattan this afternoon to meet up with a friend.

The run went well, although it was capped at 155 for the HR. I find it difficult to maintain a slow pace for base running, I'm guessing because my body is still used to running faster from this previous season. Lately I've been feeling tired during my runs, and I've come to two conclusions. First, I think that this trend of "extra" training needs to stop. It's fun to stay active, and I enjoy exercise more than just about anything, but it's beginning to take a toll on the workouts that actually matter. This can't happen. I need to have the discipline to rest when it's time to rest, and stick to the perscribed workouts. It was hard today to stay to the 155 cap, but it has to be done. I have to check my ego at the door and stick to the plan. Aerobic base is my best friend. Secondly, I really need to run less. Since the season ended, I've never taken any complete time away from swimming, biking, or running. The fact is I love to run and bike and swim. Running this time of year is great as the outdoors bring so much energy. The leaves are gorgeous, the air is crisp, and everyone seems to be running! For me, it's hard not to get excited about running. However, my long term goals are more important and I have to remember that. Only heading out the door for two runs a week is excrutiating for me, but it's in the plan so it has to be respected.

Other than that, the rest of the day will be a bit of an adventure. Oh, and I'll finally get to that review of the headlamp I talked about a couple weeks ago. Not like anyone really cares, but...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Tough swim today. Not because I wanted to work hard, but mentally it was tough. I had a busy day (still do as a matter of fact) so my getting to the pool and back to work was on a strict time table. By the time I got to the pool, I was so wound up from running around all day, I had to take a couple of laps to calm myself down and get into the strict form of my drills. During this time I've tried to keep my "drill form" as strict as it possibly can be. Otherwise, what's the point of doing the drills? Drills with bad form must certainly lead to swimming with bad form.

The most interesting point of the day came from me cheating on the 1 month with no freestyle rule. I was fed up and getting super frustrated with my drills. Not to mention I had a lapse in faith. So I did a 50 freestyle lap. I shouldn't have, but in a funny way it reaffirmed what I've been doing for the past two weeks. I can't remember swimming in a more fluid and effortless way, not to mention fast. In that 50 I felt the work of the last two weeks and could literally feel every drill I had done and the influence it had on my form. It was only 50 yards, and I don't intend to do it again for at least another two or three weeks, but damn was it nice to see that the drill work is paying off.

Other than the swim today I jogged with Lucky this morning for a few miles before work, and then again with a client I'm helping to get ready for her first 5k. I'm off in a few minutes to take another client for a run, but for this one I'll be riding The Meat Saw. Riding while a client is running is one of my favorite things. Not because it lets my fat ass relax:), but because I can really critique their form-much more than when I'm running along with them.

Super excited for my own run tomorrow!


Monday, November 9, 2009


Had a really good swim this morning. I remembered that I actually love being in the water today. The discipline to maintain strict form was there, along with the patience to go slow and really concentrate on what I was doing. There were a couple of other good swimmers in other lanes today, so I took some notes on what I saw.

For the rest of the day I'm going to plan on doing nothing! No more training. I've been cheating a little on my plan lately and adding extra workouts for fun, but I'm starting to notice that it's taking a toll on the one's that count. One of the promises I made to myself when setting out goals for next season was that I wouldn't compromise my training for anything. I intend to keep this promise!-especially when it comes to something as easy as not doing extra training.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

1 hour run, 1 hour bike, no swim

I had an hour base run scheduled for today, as well as a swim. I woke up late and felt like crap (dealing with some stuff with my best friend). I had wanted to try to get an early start on things, but sitting on the couch and drinking coffee was just too nice so it took a little bit to get my butt out the door. By the time I got out and headed to the pool the sun was shining and the temperature was rising.

The desire to swim was leaving me and the need to be outside was growing, so I did my run first. One hour, heart rate capped at 155. I averaged about 153, although it would have probably been much ,much lower (about 140) had I not gotten excited in the final twenty minutes. I kinda lost track of my Garmin and just ran how I felt. Before I knew it my HR was up near 170 and I was flying. Funny thing was I didn't even feel it. Just felt good and wanted to move a bit. I'll have to be a bit more disciplined in the future about my HR in my base training.

After the run I didn't feel much like swimming, so I bagged it and went home to ride for a bit. My legs were still a bit tired from yesterday, so I figured a nice easy afternoon ride might loosen them up a bit. I didn't take the Garmin along, but I did a little over an hour very easy. It was nice to take in a warm fall day.

Tomorrow is back to the water for the swim I missed today. I think it was important for me to do what I wanted to today. I've been feeling really tired lately and I think I need to scale back a bit-after all it is only November! No reason to push too much now. It's important to be consistent, but not at the cost of beating yourself down.

After tomorrow, my schedule says to back things down a bit. I've been averaging only 10 hours of training lately so this is going to be difficult. It'll probably feel like I'm doing nothing! Maybe that'll be a good thing...

Saturday, November 7, 2009

3+ hour ride

Three hours and then some on the bike today. First time I got back on the road (on a tri bike to boot!) In more than a month. I took it very easy, capping the HR at 155. However, I really didn't come anywhere near that as I averaged about 138 for the ride.

The ride felt relatively easy. Of course it was super slow, but I don't feel like I lost that much fitness aerobically. On a muscular level though, My quads started to sing a bit. I imagine this stems from the fact that I haven't been on the TT bike in a while. Mountainbiking has kept my fitness relatively good, but the specific actions involved with riding in such an aggresive position were definatley felt today.

I had planned on running a bit afterward today, but the urge left me. A run wasn't in my plan, so it would be purely extracurricular today. Not to mention I put in a couple easy miles with a client this morning.

Also, it never ceases to amaze me how stupid people are when driving. I imagine in a state where more people cycle and run on the roads this would be less apparent, but here on Long Island it's dispicable. Spending a month tearing up the trails made me a bit soft to drivers out on the road. All I can say is that you have to be defensive in every circumstance. Scary!

Friday, November 6, 2009


Swim today. I decided to get out the door early today and swim before work. I usually start work around 5:30 in the morning, so this often makes it hard to get a workout in beforehand. I've been feeling a bit lazy lately so it was nice to start the day off being motivated.

I swam for a little over 45 mins today, again with nothing but drills. I'm convinced that this is enough time for me. At first I assumed that anything under an hour would be too little, but being as difficult as it is doing just drills, I've found this to be just about enough. It allows me to get in some quality work and not get bored at the same time.

I'm getting better at the drills I'm doing. They're very basic (which all drills really are for the most part). It's motivating to see my improvement with drills alone. I'm very excited for the day I'll actually start back in with regular strokes again!

This weekend I'm headed up to Boston for a swim clinic. Should be interesting. I participated in one last year and wasn't very impressed. The coaching was a bit shabby, and the organization of the clinic itself stunk. They were very nice people, but when it comes to triathlon I'm not hear to f*ck around. If I'm paying my money and spending time trying to learn, I want my money's worth. If I take this seriously, I want my coaches too as well-to me that goes without saying.

This afternoon I plan to finish building up a spare tri bike (just cables to go but I HATE doing cables!) and take it for an hour or two spin, very easy.

By the way, I'm watching Ironman Wisconsin right now and getting super pumped! I'm so excited to tackle ths distance! I know it's gonna be very good for me!

So that's it for today. It's a nice, cool, fall day here so I'm gonna try and take advantage of it. Should be fun!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Swim and Run

Had a good swim today. Again it was all drills. I tried the workout Lucho suggested:25 yards of sculling followed by 25 yards of stict form catch up, and repeat. It was tough. I wanted to go on doing it for as long as I could, but I only made it to about 15 minutes before the catch up got sloppy. It was great though, and served the purpose of getting to move fast without really "swimming". I'm very happy with these drill workouts. Although they're hard I feel that they're very important to my swimming development.

After the pool I headed to one of the local trails for a "no watch" run. I didn't have a ton of time before I had to head back to work, but they've been doing some work to the trail system and I wanted to check it out. Unfortunately, they covered up one of my favorite climbs. It was probably the steepest and longest hill there. I guess I'll have to find somewhere else to do my hill repeats when I run there.

Good day of training today. Nothing special, but consistent. I still didn't feel all there on the run, but I guess it's just that time of year. I slept 10 hours last night and I hope to get in at least another 8-9 tonight. So much for a social life. :)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Ran for a little over an hour today. I wanted to run more, even though I never felt good during this run. I think the thing is that I just love running. It's almost never a hassle for me to get out the door, and if it is, after the first 500 feet I get into the run.

Today was about 8 miles, very easy, with around 2000 feet of climbing. The goal today was just putting in some base miles. I started too fast (first mile was about 7 mins) and never allowed myself to warm up. This gets to be a problem for me when I'm excited to run. I start out of the gate like an over-energized puppy. This really prevents me from finding a groove in the run and has ruined many a run for me. However, I've learned to stop, walk for a bit, and "re-set" myself, which often works. That method didn't work today though. Not sure why.

I ran on the same trails (for most of the run) that I mountain bike on. This was a great decision as they are super technical and completely new to me as far as running is concerned. Not only did this slow me down (therefore decreasing my heart rate-the goal of the run), but it also got me into a tiny bit of a rythm.

I think another reason for my sub-par run today was not sleeping much last night. I was at an election party for my mother (she was running for a Town Clerk position), and didn't get home until late. I'm not making an excuse, but....

Tomorrow is back in the pool. I'm excited to get back in the water and work the swim some more. I just have to remember to have zen-like patience.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Swim-drills, and drills, and drills

Another day of drills in the pool. Today was much much better than my last swim on Sunday. In looking back, I don't think I was being fair to myself. Sunday was only my second workout of the new "drills only" protocol. Sure I was tired, but I think my frustration generally stemmed from the fact that I wasn't moving very fast and that drills are damned hard-especially when that's all you do!. I still wasn't used to breaking everything down into drills. It takes patience and discipline, two things I was greatly lacking this past Sunday.

Today though, I bounced back. I tend to do this after a bad workout, especially in the water. Most often, when I've had a disappointing day, something in my head makes me click into the "start from scratch" mode, and I focus on the basics. If it's running, I break down my stride, and work on my form. If it's cycling, I worry about cadence and worry less about speed. It seems that the common theme of triathlon is form and efficiency. If you have those two things, you're gonna be steady. And if you're gonna be steady, you're gonna get fast. Then your fitness takes over and you can hold that speed for longer durations. At this point, I still have to remind myself to K.I.S.S-"Keep It Simple, Stupid". Maybe there are instances where it's better to KISS than to HTFU-Not many, but I'm just sayin'...

Monday, November 2, 2009

Rest Day

Relaxing a bit today. Since yesterday's dissapointing swim, I decided it would be a bad idea to try and force another today. I need a day to reset. Since I generally haven't taken 24 hours to rest without exercise, I'm going to try real hard to do that today. I plan on taking Lucky out for a walk/jog later, but that's about it.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

The day that shouldn't have been: 45 min swim, all drills

I have to say it. I had no business being in the water today. I didn't sleep well last night. I was up late. I felt bad when I woke up. I was cranky. I waited 'till the end of the day. And most importantly, because of all this (especially not getting enough sleep!) I was totally under-rested and not prepared to train today. I didn't have the discipline to get my ass to bed last night and it killed my training for today-plain and simple.

While I'm a bit dissapointed in myself, it's not the end of the world. These swim workouts are important, but flubbing one is not the end of the world. The problem arises when it becomes a habit. For now though, I'll take it as I needed to stay up late for whatever reason, and I'm not gonna beat myself over the head for it.

Again I did lots and lots of drills. Not a stroke of freestyle, although I did manage some loose catch up that may or may not have passed for freestyle. Depends on who's watching! :)

Otherwise today was mostly a relaxing day. I watched the NYC marathon and was super inspired by Meb Keflezighi's performance. That was everything I think any athlete can aspire to be. I couldn't help but tear up as he crossed the finish line. Oh, and not to mention the fact that 6 of the 10 top finishers were Americans. Very impressed and inspired!

Tomorrow is a scheduled rest day, but I think I may get back to the pool to make up for today's waste of a workout. It will all depend on how I feel the moment I wake up. If I feel good, I'll swim. If not, it's all about resting up to train the next day. We'll see.